Umpqua beefs up wealth business in Southern California

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Umpqua Holdings in Portland, Ore., is expanding its wealth management business in Southern California with the addition of four private bankers recently hired away from City National Bank.

The $26 billion-asset Umpqua said Thursday that the new additions were part of a larger push into Southern California. The bank believes that expanding its wealth management business will complement its commercial banking business in the region.

“Umpqua Bank is committed to building a strong market presence in Southern California, which includes serving the complex wealth management needs of successful business owners and other high-net-worth individuals and families,” Kent Grubaugh, Umpqua Bank’s executive vice president and head of wealth management, said in a press release.

Umpqua said that managing directors Shaun Skeris and Rob Pitois would lead its wealth management teams across Northern and Southern California from their base in Irvine. Meanwhile, private wealth advisers Kathy Gamez and Veronica Rubio, both in San Diego, would become part of its first Southern California wealth management team.

“Together, they bring the combination of local experience, established relationships and proven leadership needed to quickly boost our market presence and make an immediate impact,” Grubaugh said, noting that all four had worked together previously at City National Bank, the U.S. subsidiary of Royal Bank of Canada.

Umpqua’s holding company formed an investment banking division late last year so it could provide advice on M&A and capital raises, in an effort to better serve middle-market customers. Umpqua’s President and CEO, Cort O’Haver, has also stated his intent to grow its fee revenue businesses in a broader effort to boost profitability.

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